Jannik Sinner emerged victorious over Holger Rune, keeping his perfect record at the ATP Finals intact and securing a spot for Novak Djokovic in the semifinals alongside him.
The top-ranked player in the world was uncertain if he had qualified after beating Hubert Hurkacz 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-1 in the afternoon game.
Sinner’s scoreline secured a spot in the semi-finals, making him the first Italian to do so in this esteemed tournament. A win for Rune would also secure his spot ahead of defending champion Djokovic. However, Sinner continued to dominate on his home turf in Turin, defeating the young Dane 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 following his impressive victory over Djokovic on Tuesday.
At the beginning, Sinner dominated by winning the first four games, but then Rune caught up. The second set was more closely contested and both players had physical issues. Rune called for a trainer to wrap his right knee, while Sinner seemed to strain his back.
When Sinner lost his serve and the second set, the outcome of the match was uncertain. This continued into the deciding set until the fourth seed managed to break through and take a 5-4 lead. He ultimately won his first career match against Rune.
Hurkacz took the place of the injured Stefanos Tsitsipas and was aware that he would not be able to advance in his match against Djokovic. However, with the chance to earn 200 ranking points and over £300,000 in prize money, there was still a lot at stake.
The first set was closely contested, but Djokovic ultimately won due to a perfect tie-break. Despite losing all six previous matches against Djokovic, Hurkacz managed to break serve in the fifth game of the second set and maintained his lead to tie the match. However, Djokovic dominated the final set.
Later, he maintained that he was prepared to face any outcome and stated to media in Turin regarding Sinner: “I will not become his fan. If he is victorious, I will advance. If he is not, I will still end the season with a victory and shift my focus to Davis Cup. That is my current mindset.”
On the other hand, Djokovic expressed his satisfaction about Rafael Nadal’s encouraging news about his physical condition. Nadal has been out of action for nearly a year due to a hip injury he sustained at the Australian Open, and there were concerns about his future.
On Wednesday, Nadal announced that he will be playing in the upcoming season. Djokovic praised his resilience, stating, “He’s a formidable warrior who never gives up. Despite his numerous injuries, he continues to push forward. We must all admire and respect his spirit. It’s fantastic news for the tennis world that he will be returning.”